DIVID is a versatile street furniture support system that uses dividers made from Ultra-high-performance glass concrete as base elements to structure and define urban spaces. The ultra-high performance glass concrete is more resilient and offers better physical properties than the traditional composite: smoother and less porous surfaces, stronger resistance to impact, frost and graffiti. Micronised glass particles are used to substitute about 30% of the cement, which makes the dividers less heat-absorbent and more eco-friendly.
This system can serve different purposes: demarcate construction sites, delineate and identify event sites, control crowds, separate and secure bike paths, and above all, support a variety of urban furniture. The dividers can be equipped with a lighting system, powered by integrated transparent photovoltaic solar cells, which are part of each light fixture. The lighting provides a safer environment for pedestrians and cyclists and increases visibility during evening hours, especially during fall and winter season.
DIVID has been designed to support temporary and semi-permanent elements such as signs and artwork, as well as fences and various accessories, such as seats, benches, trash containers, plant boxes, or traffic signs. The system has the potential to evolve and support other features.
The designed seating elements are made of translucent roto-moulded plastic that can be backlit in order to enhance the ambience and animate sites when needed. All accessories can be securely attached to the concrete dividers in a temporary or more permanent fashion. The rubber sole and its integrated adjustable feet help level the concrete dividers and protect surfaces during transport and installation. Made from recycled rubber, the synthetic polymer base has the potential to reduce noise or limit vibration transfer, a feature highly appreciated around construction sites.
The overall language of the form gives DIVID a simple and utilitarian look, yet it can be ‘dressed up’ and personalised, thus helping to shape the identity of a city. The design details of DIVID make a subtle reference to traffic cones, giving the concrete dividers a unique and memorable look, which is especially significant for Montreal, a city known for its perpetual construction activities and its numerous festivals.
GRAD, Design Research Lab, University of Montreal, Canada